Father yells at man charged in daughter's assault in court

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 GREENUP, Ky. (KT) - The father of a 2-year-old who police said was violently shaken in April was taken into custody on Thursday after yelling at a man charged with assault in his daughter’s case.


Ricky Michael May, 29, of Greenup, was later removed from custody by the judge in the case. Greenup County Circuit Court Judge Robert Conley gave him a verbal warning and is releasing him.


May yelled in open court after Bobby Lee Brantley, 32, of Ashland, appeared in front of the judge for a status hearing. Brantley is charged with first-degree assault in connection to the case of Calliope May, 2, daughter of Ricky May.


“Look at her,” screamed Ricky May. “Look at what you did to her, you piece of (expletive)!”


Court personnel took May into custody and lodged him at the Greenup County Detention Center. The family pleaded with court personnel outside of court, requesting Ricky May be released. Court personnel explained the dangers of yelling in open court and the process of contempt.



Along with family, friends and supporters of Calliope May, Linda Katherine Pemberton, the child’s mother, was also in attendance. Pemberton and Ricky May held on to their daughter while the attorneys discussed a jury-trial date with Greenup County Circuit Court Judge Robert Conley. Brantley is scheduled for a May 11 trial date.

Rhese McKenzie, Brantley’s attorney, said the defense has requested additional medical records.

Brantley was arrested in April after Calliope May was found unresponsive at Foothills Apartments in Wurtland. Calliope was transported to Our Lady of Bellefonte Hospital and later airlifted to the Cabell Huntington Hospital where she remained in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit listed in critical condition. May was then transported to Nationwide Children’s Hospital and diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury.

Officer Shawn Podunavac said he spoke with Calliope’s neurologist at Cabell, who said that her injuries were caused by “somebody shaking or slamming the child,” according to court records.

Court records indicate Brantley admitted on April 29 to causing the injuries by “picking her up too hard.”

“He stated after he picked her up, she was having trouble breathing,” according to court records.

Police seized the clothing Calliope was wearing during the incident, along with a piece of drywall, a portion of baseboard, three hairs taken from a door and a wooden club with “The Beater” written on it, according to court records.

Brantley was originally charged with criminal abuse of a child under the age of 12, but the charge was amended by the Greenup County Grand Jury to first-degree assault on June 20. Conley ordered Brantley’s bail be set at $50,000. Brantley currently remains lodged at the Greenup County Detention Center.

“We’re hoping and praying with time and God’s will that she will be more than this one day,” Pemberton previously told The Daily Independent. “We just miss the brilliant, selfless, funny, charismatic little girl we had before, but we will love her unconditionally no matter what the long-term outcome is.”

Those wishing to follow May’s progress can do so on Facebook under the search “Callie’s Story.”


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